Selkirk College, SD8 host anti-racism, intercultural awareness event


[Image cutline: Author and activist Desmond Cole will be the keynote speaker at an October 23 event being put on by Selkirk College’s Mir Centre for Peace and School District #8. Cole is the author of the bestselling book The Skin We’re In: A Year of Black Resistance and Power which was released in January 2020. (photo by Kate Yang-Nikodym)]

Selkirk College is hosting a full-day anti-racism and intercultural awareness event tomorrow in partnership with School District 8.

Chair of the Mir Centre for Peace and Event organizer Jennie Barron says the event is a product of two ideas that had been floating around the school.

She explains that committee members found that problems with racial justice were on their mind through the summer; Barron also recalls the School District independently looking at doing some professional development on the topic and she herself had already invited Desmond Cole down as a featured speaker for the Mir lecture series.

Desmond Cole is a Canadian writer and activist who Barron thinks is going to be proactive and “tell it like it is”; he kicks off the event with a virtual keynote speech at 9AM via Zoom.

She says some people might feel uncomfortable but comfort is not the end goal, adding the end goal is racial justice and transformation to an equitable society.

Barron says another activity for the day is hearing from a panel of international Selkirk College students sharing their experiences in coming to Canada including intercultural misunderstandings and some experiences of racism.

She says she’s heard some stories herself already calling it painful to know what some people experience and how unwelcoming we can be sometimes.

There will also be activities, interactive lectures, breaks and links to community supports.

The event goes tomorrow, Friday October 23rd and is entirely virtual.

Pre-register online or by clicking here.